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Peixiang Zhang, PhD

Academic Title:

Associate Professor

Primary Appointment:



670 W. Baltimore Street HSF III, Baltimore, MD 21201

Phone (Primary):


Education and Training

Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine, Nanjing, China, BS, Pharmacy, 1995

Nanjing University, Nanjing, China, PhD, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2003

Columbia University School of Medicine, New York, Postdoc, Obesity and Metabolism, 2005

University of California Los Angeles School of Medicine, Los Angeles, California, Postdoc, Human Genetics, 2009


Peixiang (Peter) Zhang is an Associate Professor in the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Nutrition at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. His laboratory focuses on understanding the molecular bases of metabolic diseases and advancing the field of precision cardiovascular medicine.

The research conducted in Dr. Zhang's lab employs a range of molecular genetics methodologies and computational analyses to identify genetic risk factors and uncover downstream pathways contributing to the development of symptoms and drug reactions. Notably, his work has utilized both spontaneous and genetically engineered mouse models to investigate the significant roles of the lipin gene family in lipid metabolism and disorders. This includes detailed studies on how mutations in Lpin1 lead to recurrent muscle necrosis (rhabdomyolysis) and increased susceptibility to the adverse effects associated with statin drugs, which are widely used in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases.

In collaboration with Drs. Jake Lusis and Karen Reue, Dr. Zhang has conducted an integrative systems genetics analysis using the Hybrid Mouse Diversity Panel (HMDP). This collaboration has been instrumental in identifying novel genetic risk factors and revealing distinct downstream pathways associated with the common adverse effects of statin drugs, posing significant challenges in reducing cardiovascular disease risk. Additionally, Dr. Zhang has initiated research into the sex-specific adverse effects of statins, specifically examining the role of X chromosome dosage in the occurrence of statin-induced dysglycemia and mitochondrial dysfunction.

Research/Clinical Keywords

genetics, pharmacogenomics, biology of sex differences, cardiovascular disease

Highlighted Publications

  1. Zhang P, Munier JJ, Vergnes L, Wiese CB, Link JC, Abbasi F, Ronquillo E, Scheker K, Muñoz A, Kuang YL, Theusch E, Liu M, Sanchez G, Oni-Orisan A, Iribarren C, McPhaul MJ, Nomura DK, Knowles JW, Krauss RM, Medina MW, Reue K. X chromosome dosage drives statin-induced dysglycemia and mitochondrial dysfunction. Nature Communications (Accepted).
  2. Wiese CB, Agle ZW, Zhang P, Reue K. Chromosomal and gonadal sex drive sex differences in lipids and hepatic gene expression in response to hypercholesterolemia and statin treatment. Biol Sex Differ. 2022;13(1):63. PMCID: PMC9636767
  3. Molendijk J, Blazev R, Mills RJ, Ng YK, Watt KI, Chau D, Gregorevic P, Crouch PJ, Hilton JBW, Lisowski L, Zhang P, Reue K, Lusis AJ, Hudson JE, James DE, Seldin MM, Parker BL. Proteome-wide systems genetics identifies UFMylation as a regulator of skeletal muscle function. Elife. 2022 Dec 6;11:e82951
  4. Zhang P, Csaki LS, Ronquillo E, Baufeld LJ, Lin JY, Gutierrez A, Dwyer JR, Brindley DN, Fong LG, Tontonoz P, Young SG, Reue K. (2019) Lipin2/3 phosphatidic acid phosphatases maintain phospholipid homeostasis to regulate chylomicron synthesis. J Clin Invest 129:281-295. PMC: 6307960
  5. Zhang P, Verity MA, Reue K. Lipin-1 regulates autophagy clearance and intersects with statin drug effects in skeletal muscle. Cell Metab. 2014;20(2):267-79. PMCID: PMC4170588